Help with your dog’s heartbreak

Just like humans, animals can experience times of sadness, anxiousness and loss. If your pet is experiencing one of the three below then the herbal experts are here to impart words of wisdom.

Phantom pregnancy

Phantom, pseudo or false pregnancies occur more frequently in dogs than cats, and bitches that have a tendency to these will often suffer season after season. You may notice the obvious physical symptoms such as milk production and swollen teats, but sometimes emotional symptoms too can be quite common for bitches going through a phantom.

They can become very unsettled, start carrying around their toys and making nests which is not surprising really as they can be very confused about what is happening, as they thought they were going to have puppies. We can find it upsetting to see our bitches agitated, confused and anxious so what can we do…?

How can we help our bitches who are going through a phantom pregnancy?

Well, prevention really is the best answer for a bitch who is prone to phantom pregnancies. Our Raspberry Leaf Tablets aid in the prevention of pseudo-pregnancies and need to be given on the first day that the bitch is showing signs of being in season. We recommend that 2 tablets per 10kgs bodyweight should be given daily and to be continued for 12 weeks, which is up to the time when she would have whelped had she been mated.

But what if she is in her phantom stage- how can I help her?

If it’s too late for Raspberry Leaf Tablets, there is assistance available that may help to reduce the symptoms and make her more settled while it lasts. The homeopathic remedy, Pulsatilla 15C can be given every 2 hours for the first 12 hours and then four times a day until no longer required. At the same time, give the homeopathic remedy Urtica 3C which is specifically used to suppress the milk production and one of our most widely used homeopathic remedies.

It is also a good idea to introduce some Evening Primrose Oil whether she is beginning her season or going through a phantom as it will restore and support hormonal balance.

“Following my Dalmatian bitch’s first season she suffered a distressing phantom. Knowing that these usually get worse with subsequent seasons I was anticipating the worse. However I put her on Dorwest’s Raspberry Leaf Tablets on the first day of her next season and have been really amazed. There have been hardly any symptoms and she has not been distressed at all. I would recommend these tablets to anyone who has the same problem.” Alison Burgess, West Sussex

Bereavement in dogs

Has your dog lost their best doggy pal, or perhaps an owner has passed away? It is heartwrenching to lose someone, whether they are a pet or human family member. It is equally normal to expect that your dog will notice when their companions are no longer there.

Whilst we don’t know whether or not their experience of ‘sadness’ compares to our own grieving, we can assume that they are going to be unsettled at the very least. If you dog is very unsettled, low and depressed it may be a good idea to give Damiana and Kola Tablets which can increase alertness and vitality. We recommend giving 1-2 tablets per 5 kg daily until you see signs that your dog is feeling better. It is a good choice for pets when their mental energy is low as a result of bereavement. You could also try our Scullcap & Valerian Tablets to help tackle any stress and anxiety. These naturally support the calming pathways within the nervous system, reducing anxiety and helping them settle without making pets drowsy.

However, allow them to do self-comforting things such as sleeping a little or staying in their beds for a while as they will feeling a little down. But, it would be a nice idea to provide extra enjoyment for them over these difficult days. Provide a new routine to go along with the changes such as making sure your pet has a few extra playtimes and you might make more playdates with other dogs that they already know, or treat them to a new chewy toy to get their brain busy.

Bereavement is a difficult but after some time your dog should get back to their normal self with some love and TLC

Rescue dogs

Sometimes situations in life change, leaving a dog without an owner that can care for him or her. Fortunately, caring animal lovers can offer such dogs a place to live, rest, play and socialise in their new forever home.

However, a new change in their lives can be very daunting for a rescue dog and most may naturally feel confused, anxious or unsettled because of their past experiences. Their first time in a new home may take a bit of getting used to, so don’t be surprised if your new arrival is a little withdrawn.

We recommend Scullcap and Valerian Tablets if your new rescue dog is anxious or scared as this will relax and calm them and so increase confidence and security. Either 1 or 2 tablets for every 5kg bodyweight is the recommended dose for these tablets and they can be given for as long as necessary to overcome the initial anxiety and establish confidence and calmness.

It is also important to practice leaving your new dog at home for short periods at first so that he doesn’t mind you coming or going. Due to past experiences, your new dog might be unsettled with you popping out but this will build trust and your dog will eventually feel comfortable and safe home alone.

“Dorwest was recommended to me by a friend who is a vet. Not only were the products themselves real life-changer (for our dog and therefore for us!) but the advice from Dorset was comprehensive and useful. We had a hugely anxious rescue dog and tried at least six different remedies, two plug-ins and a sprays as well as following the advice of behaviour and training professionals. Dorwest’s Scullcap & Valerian Tablets were the single most effective treatment. I can honestly say that we couldn’t have kept our dog, if we hadn’t been using these tablets – her level of anxiety meant we’d have sent her back to the rescue after a couple of weeks.” Mrs L Smith, Hertfordshire